Running a restaurant is hard work, and it's even harder when your kitchen isn't designed to be safe and effective.
If your kitchen is poorly thought-out, you could fall foul of health and safety regulations and put staff and customers at risk. Luckily, it's not hard to get the basics right.
Keep reading for details on four key features of a safe commercial kitchen. If you don't currently have these boxes checked, it's time to make a change.
A cramped kitchen isn't just uncomfortable and frustrating for staff - it also puts them at risk of harm. Trying to squeeze too many pieces of equipment into one small space makes it harder for cooks to follow safe food prep procedures, increasing the risk of cuts, burns, slips, and trips.
Design your kitchen so that there's plenty of floor and counter space, and be sure to think ahead if you're planning to expand. Larger is always better, so don't add your kitchen as an afterthought.
Designated Food Prep Areas
Depending on the type of food you serve, it's advisable to create dedicated food prep areas for different types of food. This could mean one area for chopping raw meat, another for salad, another for fish, and so on.
This reduces the risk of contamination and will help you to maintain a good health and safety rating. It also makes things easier for cooks and reduces the risk of serving incorrect orders to customers.
How hot does your restaurant kitchen usually get? What about food odours? And what if something burns?
With all the steam, smoke, and heat that is present, it's essential that your kitchen space is well-ventilated. This keeps the environment safe for staff, prevents unpleasant odours from wafting through to the dining area, and prevents damage to your building and equipment.
Dedicated Hand Washing Facilities
Do your cooks wash their hands in food prep areas? That's a big no-no. You should offer dedicated hand washing facilities separate from the sinks used to wash and prepare food, and these should be accessible to staff at all times.
Be sure to provide multiple areas if you have large numbers of staff, and keep them well-stocked with antibacterial soap. Regular hand washing keeps staff and customers safe, preventing the spread of dangerous germs.
Are you planning a new commercial kitchen fitout? Keep staff and customers safe by including the features listed above.